Profile for ron yeats > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by ron yeats
Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,472,331
Helpful Votes: 3

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
ron yeats (UK)

Show:  
Page: 1
pixel
The Caravaggio Conspiracy
The Caravaggio Conspiracy
by Walter Ellis
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.00

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant, 5 Oct 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is another terrific book by Walter Ellis. He is an extraordinarily versatile and gifted writer.

In the Oxbridge Conspiracy he analysed the influence of Oxford and Cambridge on national life. Mr Ellis showed that he was an accomplished journalist who could marshal facts adroitly.

In the Beginning of the End, his memoir of his upbringing in Belfast, he described his relationship with a Protestant who became an IRA assassin. This was Mr Ellis as a sensitive writer. I agree with a reader who reviewed this on Amazon: " It is vivid, dramatic and challenges the reader to ask questions about the nature of friendship. But there is much more, too. The book is also about family, growing up, the quality of memory, ambition, hope and disappointment. It is set in the black and white world of the Troubles. Ellis writes beautifully. He is funny, self deprecating and intelligent."

Then Mr Ellis turned to crime, in Anglophobia, a murder mystery set amongst the English ex-pat community in a sleepy corner of France. Here Mr Ellis showed he could craft a traditional story. The characters were rich and hs observations on the ex pat community shrewd and amusing. This was published as a Kindle rather than by a major publisher.

Next came London Eye. This is a fantastic black-comedy about three middle aged friends. Matthew D'Ancona, a former editor of the Spectator and a recent Booker Prize judge, wrote of this: "Walter Ellis is one of the great veterans of the last days of Fleet Street - a journalist of awesome facility and lucidity, who could famously turn out 2,000 words of perfectly-turned prose on just about any subject before (or, still better, after) a proper El Vino lunch. But, rather than wallow in nostalgia, he has produced a superb novel .....that will have readers laughing over their Kindles in public places and gripped by the taut and entertaining plot that he has devised. 'London Eye' is a homage to this great world city on the eve of its Olympic year but it is also a cracking read, that will have you clicking the page-turn button with relish. Not to be missed and surely the first of many such triumphs by a voice both confidently familiar and energisingly fresh." The eminent historian, Andrew Roberts, wrote: "This book moves from the genuinely witty to the touchingly elegiac into a perceptively-nuanced treatise on the nature of modern friendship. I was gripped from the opening chapter and hugely enjoyed it through to the end. It also serves as a biting satire on the state of modern Britain" It is a disgrace that this wonderful book was not published by a major company; instead it appeared as a bargain-priced Kindle.

Now we have the Caravvagio Conspiracy. This is published by a small Irish publisher - which means that it has not had significant exposure or backing . Had it been published in the UK by a major publisher I have no doubt it would have done well. It is better written, more erudite and more challenging than books covering similar themes ( the Dan Brown genre). Books like this succeed or sink on the basis of how much publishers spend on promotion. Anyone who wants to hear more about the book should go to You Tuube ( [...]) where Mr Ellis discusses it.

I agree with another reader, Colin Smith, who applauds the taut writing, the elegant plotting, the weaving of religious, artistic and political history into a seamless narrative and, above all, the evocation of the smells, intrigues and casual violence of 17 th century Rome. My favourite character, in a terrific cast of villains and heroes, is Caravaggio, a filthy, hot tempered genius. Every page crackles with authenticity, which comes from diligent research. (Other authors take note.) We learn about sanitation in 17 th century Rome and about the patronage of artists there, about the growth of radical Islam in the twenty first century and the modern politics of electing a Pope. This is an instructive as well as an entertaining book.

Mr Ellis should be an acclaimed author. I hope major publishers spot his talent.


The Oxbridge Conspiracy
The Oxbridge Conspiracy
by Walter Ellis
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant, 8 Aug 2012
This is a superb examination of the influence of Oxbridge in national life, as relevant today as when it was published. Mr Ellis marshals his facts superbly. He writes fluently, with intelligence and wit. I recommend this unreservedly.


Anglophobia
Anglophobia
Price: £2.65

5.0 out of 5 stars stylish and intelligent, 26 July 2012
This review is from: Anglophobia (Kindle Edition)
Anyone who is familiar with Walter Ellis's books knows they will always get a well written, intelligent and carefully crafted work. This lives up to his usual, high standards. Although it is nominally a detective story it is more a traditional novel because character and place are more important than plot or action. The lead characters, the damaged O'Brien and the undervalued, absurdly tall Dreyfus, are beautifully sketched. I loved Giraud, Dreyfus' amiable sidekick. Best of all were the British ex-pats, rogues, failures and the disappointed, who have washed in an unfashionable, cheap part of France because there was nowhere else to go. The whole book oozes atmosphere and would make a terrific television drama.


The Big Breach: From Top Secret to Maximum Security
The Big Breach: From Top Secret to Maximum Security
by Richard Tomlinson
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars riveting, 24 July 2012
This is a well written, revealing account of M16, in the days when the agency was still mired in the self defeating secrecy of the Cold War. Tomlinson portrays an organisation of suffocating bureaucracy, snobbery, laziness, internal bickering and inefficiency; it is more Yes Minister than James Bond. This might not be wholly fair - there must, surely, have been Bond like figures, SAS crossed with Oxbridge Firsts - but Tomlinson does not appear to have met them. Overall, a fascinating book.


London Eye
London Eye
Price: £2.65

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a six star masterpiece, 18 July 2012
This review is from: London Eye (Kindle Edition)
I echo what other readers - especially Mr Janson-Smith - have said. This is a wonderful book. It is funny, warm, wise and uplifting. It is about coming to terms with disappointment, professional, social and emotional, and moving on.

It describes three men whose lives have diverged so they no longer have anything in common. This is a fact of life. But - and here Mr Ellis offers hope - the friendships of youth can survive, albeit in a different form..

Taylor, the hospital doctor, and Bourke, the tycoon, are splendid characters but the star is Mike Moran, the historian. Moran is hilarious. He is a bumbling, endearing buffoon who, ultimately and despite himself, triumphs.. He deserves a book on his own.

Shame on publishers for not snapping up London Eye. Mr Ellis is a craftsman who should be in the windows of major book shops, alongside the stars of fiction.


Page: 1